Very Quiet on Campus

It’s the middle of Spring Break week and it is very, very quiet on campus.  Today is gray and overcast, and the air has the peculiar ‘drying tobacco’ smell that we sometimes get in Winston-Salem.  For many years, Winston-Salem was home to a couple of major manufacturing efforts – textiles and tobacco among them.  Fairly near campus there is a large cigarette manufacturing plant and if the air temperature and humidity are just right, you can smell a hint of the tobacco in the air.  The best way to describe it is to say it smells like unrolled cigarettes – faintly sweet and maybe a little woody or mossy.  It’s a smell that students quickly come to recognize.

It has been said that smell can evoke very powerful and vivid memories.  Years from now, when your students have moved on to their jobs and families all across the states (or even the world), if they smell this particular smell I would bet you they think immediately of Winston-Salem.

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